Tummy tuck is a nickname commonly used for a procedure formally known as abdominalplasty. This represents the area we grab when we are ‘feeling fat’ – it’s the post-baby bellies we wish away and sometimes we also wish we had the courage to get that tummy tuck. We try the diet and exercise routes but this is the loose skin that hasn’t tightened up after weight loss. Often what stops us from doing something is also the lack of knowledge and research – there is so much information out there we are not always sure what to believe. We hope to share some basic foundations of what is involved in a tummy tuck.
Tummy tucks are often misconstrued as liposuctions. They are actually two different procedures but can be down in conjunction with one another. Just to clarify, liposuction is just the removal of fat. A tummy tuck is the removal of excess skin. This usually occurs after extreme weight gain followed by weight loss, like pregnancy. The skin is stretched, and if you are extremely lucky it shrinks back but it most cases this doesn’t happen.
When the skin doesn’t shrink back around the abdomen area, especially after multiple pregnancies, there is often loose skin that evidently shows when we wear tight tops and jeans, or protrude with fitted dresses. Often you can’t even ‘hold it in’.
There are two types of tummy tucks. One that is a minor tummy tuck where excess skin is removed, and the scar resembles a c-section scar that is 10cm wide just below the bikini line. A major tummy tuck, however, has a larger scar that goes from hip to hip.
The procedure can enhance your appearance and your self-confidence. The tummy tuck surgery takes 2 – 4 hours depending whether it is a minor tummy tuck where you can go home the same day or a major tummy tuck. For the larger tummy tucks, you may have to stay overnight in a hospital.
After the first few days, there will be swelling along with some discomfort and pain. Stitches will be removed in 5-7 days, and deeper stitches will be removed after 2 – 3 weeks. A support garment will have to be worn for a few weeks. Most patients then return to work after a week. It’s always best to have a consultation with the surgeons to understand all the risk and benefits.
Drs. Maurizio and Roberto Viel have over 25 years of experience in the field of cosmetic surgery industry and are known for their expertise in cosmetic treatments and surgeries.
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